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ARCHIVE
Reports 2006

Dec. 18-23, 2006
Dec. 11-16, 2006
Nov. 27-Dec. 9, 2006
Nov. 20-25, 2006
Nov. 13-19, 2006
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Oct. 30-Nov. 5, 2006
Oct. 23-28, 2006
Oct. 16-21, 2006
Oct. 9-14, 2006
Oct. 2-7, 2006
Sep. 24-30, 2006
Sep. 16-22, 2006
Sep. 11-14, 2006
Sep. 4-9, 2006
Aug. 28-Sep. 2, 2006
Aug. 21-26, 2006
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Aug. 7-12, 2006
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Jul. 24-29, 2006
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Feb. 12-18, 2006
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Jan. 23-28, 2006
Jan. 16-21, 2006
Jan. 9-14, 2006
Jan. 2-7, 2006

Reports 2005
Dec. 26-31, 2005
Dec. 18-24, 2005
Dec. 12-17, 2005
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Nov. 28-Dec. 3, 2005
Nov. 19-26, 2005
Nov. 14-19, 2005
Nov. 6-12, 2005
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Oct. 23-29, 2005
Oct. 16-22, 2005
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Oct. 3-8, 2005
Sept. 25-Oct,1, 2005
Sept. 19-24, 2005
Sept. 12-17, 2005
Sept. 5-10, 2005
Aug. 29-Sept. 3, 2005
Aug. 21-27, 2005
Aug. 14-20, 2005
Aug. 8-12, 2005
Aug. 1-6, 2005
Jul. 25-30, 2005
Jul. 18-23, 2005
Jul. 11-17, 2005
Jul. 1-9, 2005
Jun. 26-Jul. 2, 2005
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Jun. 12-19, 2005
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May 22-28, 2005
May 16-21, 2005
May 8-14, 2005
May 1-6, 2005
Apr. 24-30, 2005
Apr. 18-23, 2005
Apr. 11-16, 2005
Apr. 4-10, 2005
Mar. 26-Apr. 3, 2005
Mar. 21-23, 2005
Mar. 14-19, 2005
Mar. 7-12, 2005
Feb. 27-Mar. 5, 2005
Feb. 21-26, 2005
Feb. 13-19, 2005
Feb. 7-12, 2005
Jan. 30-Feb. 5, 2005
Jan. 23-29, 2005
Jan. 16-22, 2005
Jan. 10-15, 2005
Jan. 3-5, 2005

Reports 2004
Dec. 25-27, 2004
Dec. 20-25, 2004
Dec. 12-18, 2004
Dec. 6-11, 2004
Nov. 28-Dec. 4, 2004
Nov. 22-27, 2004
Nov. 15-21, 2004
Nov. 8-14, 2004
Nov. 1-6, 2004
Oct. 25-30, 2004
Oct. 18-23, 2004
Oct. 11-16, 2004

 

New Construction

Lease / purchase

Phase 3: The construction of the remaining 11 residences.
See what's new: Garden Residences of Río Oro.

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Progress Report

April 9-14, 2007 // CONSTRUCTION LOG #131

Contact phone numbers

Internet Phone:
New York: 315-279-6711
Toronto: 416-907-5758 // 416-461-2203

Costa Rica:
Cell: 506-305-3965
Land: 506-282-4142 Ext. 101

NOTE: the New York and Toronto numbers are "local calls" for people in the area codes; calls from outside the area code will be billed at the normal rate from the caller's area code to either the "315" or the "416" area code.


NOTE: NOW THAT THIS DEVELOPMENT IS ESSENTIALLY FINISHED, THE LOG WILL FOCUS MORE ON THE RIO ORO DEVELOPMENT. IT WILL BE INFORMATIVE TO THOSE PLANNING ON BUILDING, THOSE LOOKING FOR A PLACE TO PURCHASE OR TO LEASE, AND FOR THOSE WONDERING WHAT EXPATS DO IN COSTA RICA AND THE LIFESTYLE OF TWO ORDINARY PEOPLE.

The STORY: El Dorado inches forward, and Los Jardines is same old, same old...

CONSTRUCTION

We returned to work as scheduled Monday morning. The fence is slowly progressing but we aren't in any record breaking mode.

We bought a 3 1/2 ton diesel stake truck. We've spent a few days fixing up little things and customizing it, eg. a trailer hitch and some reinforcements. The engine, body and bed are all in good shape. It will take care of moving materials on site and for goffering the odd things.

We have now approved the final site design with the architect. He will use this draft to complete the paperwork for site design approval from SETENA-an environmental impact study has to be done. I shouldn't be extensive nor difficult as we are in a zoned residential district and are surrounded by residences. We are respecting the stream running through the property and all the protected tree species as well as many of the non-protected species. In addition, we plan on only minimal disturbance of the soil as we will adapt our buildings to the topography. Lastly, we will be putting in a large black water treatment plant to address the sewage pollution. Having said all this, we are at the mercy of SETENA as to what info they will want, what assurances they will require, and what new things they might want us to do. We'll submit the paperwork in a week and then wait, and wait, and wait...

We have commissioned the civil, electrical, and mechanical engineer(s) to begin working with this site plan. We anticipate it will take until June 1 to have all this info. together at which time we will be prepared to submit for engineering approval.

How long for both of these approvals? That is what everyone asks. We are allowing 10 mo. in our schedule for this to happen. There are no assurances.

Residencias Los Jardines:

RENTALS:

Unit 106 A:
(Available May 1)
Ground floor, 1,250sf, 1 bedroom with office/den/bedroom, two bathrooms, two terraces, granite bathrooms and kitchen; fully furnished.
- $900 mo.

Unit 112:
(Available May 1)
Similar to Unit 120 (below) except it's attached on two sides.
- $1,350 mo.

Unit 120:
(Available June 1 - commitment pending)
Single floor, 1,300 sf, 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, executive furnishings throughout —all rooms is beautifully decorated. The kitchen and both bathrooms have granite surfaces. The kitchen cabinets are made from natural wood; there is a raised eating counter for casual dining. The kitchen features SS appliances —dishwasher, 6 burner gas stove, and microwave and all the small appliances needed for cooking. The wrought iron and glass dining room table seats 4. Living room features a beautiful full length book case / lighted display area with home theater system and a 42' plasma TV. On the covered terrace are a set of casual chairs as well as a 6 seat dining table. The home is equipped with a stacked washer / dryer.
- $1,400 mo.

Unit 124:
(Available May 1)
2nd. floor, one bedroom (620 sf), fully furnished with display bookshelf / wall unit, home theater system, 42" Plasma TV, computer desk, large kitchen with natural wood cabinets and granite counters and backsplash including valence lighting, Bedroom has a full size (matrimonial) bed as well as a single bed. There is a matrimonial size pull out sofa in the living room. The living room overlooks the large pool and faces west. The bedroom faces east and has views of the mountains.
$950 mo.

Residencias Los Jardines is a secure, gated, tranquil community with on-site satellite and / or CableTica TV, high speed internet, VOIP phone capability, 2 swimming pools each with waterfalls, bar-b-qs and social areas, English and Spanish spoken, extensive manicured gardens, English / Spanish /German / Dutch / French spoken.

We've had several lookers this week. Some have said they will commit; some are still thinking. We'll respond accordingly.

RESALES:

Unit 112: $170,000
Single floor, 1,300 sf, 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, new furnishings. The kitchen and both bathrooms have granite counters. The kitchen cabinets are made from natural wood- "cedro" and has a breakfast counter for casual dining. The kitchen features SS appliances —6 burner gas stove, and GE "Profile" microwave and exhaust space saver unit and all the small appliances and items needed for cooking and dining. The living room features a floor to ceiling full length book case / display /entertainment center. Areas for a computer work station and TV are incorporated. The LR features one chair, love seat and a sofa as well as 4 wrought iron / granite topped end / coffee tables. There is a 6 seat glass and wood dining room table as well. On the covered terrace is a 6 seat dining table. The home is equipped with a stacked washer / dryer. It has vaulted ceilings, valance (direct and indirect lighting). It's located at the back of the property, near the large pool; it is part of a 4 unit complex.

Note: In speaking with one agent, she is finding a lot of clients from Venezuela-these people are getting out while they still can and are looking to buy and to lease. Costa Rica is seen as a "safe haven".

OUR LIVES

Weather: The rainy season has arrived; we've had showers every day this past week. It's been nice, actually. The garden is perking up and the plants are happy. We've planted some sod in areas which needed to be replenished.

This next 6 weeks is the time for June bugs and house flies-virtually the only time of the year that we have any flying critters at all.

One of Lita's budgies died and a pet parrot like Vicka of a friend of hers also died. In each case, who knows why?

A friend returned from a contract and it's always nice to reunite with him. He's in love with a lady he met shortly before leaving. He's here for at least 3 1/2 months; we'll see how the relationship develops. He hosted a get-together Saturday evening and endured our teasing.

Another friend / owner returned from his home area of Canada. He thought he might be offered a job which meant returning to the tax capital of the world and to corporate life-he ran back to his golf clubs and we're glad he's still got his priorities straight as to what's really important in life.

The beer-can chicken was it's usual fantastic self and the fresh French fries were delicious as well-but no matter how good or poor the food is, it's always the company and the camaraderie that is the most important.

We've been experimenting with our new deep fryer —chicken wings, home made French fries (potatoes, plantains, yucca), schnitzels, chicken fingers, etc. It's been great but terrible healthwise for us so we'll move on to healthier cooking (after having fish and chips) tonight —and reserve this for special occasions in the future.

Who comes to Los Jardines and Why? (continued)
Listed in no particular order:

Person 7: Owner, single, mid 60s, an accomplished chef, is also does contracts as a musician on cruise ships-most recently the Queen Mary. He wanted a better quality of life for his income level. He had visited CR before and when I moved here and developed Los Jardines, he found a home for himself. After some 15 years, he's recently found a woman who he hopes to make a new future with. He's leased out his place when on contract.

Person 8: A Canadian couple in their mid 60s. He's a retired engineer. She has a chronic disease and he has dedicated himself to caring for her. They spent winters here and lease our their place when not in attendance. We knew each other in Canada.

Person 9: Single American, male, early 70s. Previous financial analyst of a large automobile company and retired priest. He lost his wife after a long marriage. He's subsequently met a wonderful woman here with whom he hopes to share the future.

Person 10: A late 30s couple from Germany, tenants. They came to CR to settle after working in the US hospitality industry. They are currently building a beautiful house in Santa Ana. They've been here about two years and will be moving into their new home in late May.

Person 11: A mid 40s couple from Europe-England and Holland-via Curacao. She works in the internet gaming business and he is recovering from some health issues after having worked in a number of capacities. In the meantime, helps maintain our entertainment systems, cigar contacts, and has perfected his "beer-can" chicken.

Person 12: Owner from the Midwest, mid 50s, school administrator, purchased a home in anticipation of retirement in three years. In the meantime, we are leasing it for him. He can't wait to get here to enjoy his home, Los Jardines, and Costa Rica.

To be continued.

Brian, Lita, Hugo and irreverent Vicka, the pigeon toed parrot.

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MASTERPLAN

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Overlay of Version 1 of the master plan. There will be some minor changes to it but for the most part, it is a reasonable starting point. The picture with the yellow dots represents trees.  One swimming pool will likely be eliminated in favor of houses (the large one near the 2nd. pool (bottom left hand corner)  This area will likely become a condominium within a condominium having it's own direct street access.